What’s the Difference Between King and California King Mattresses?

Purchasing a new mattress or bed involves a lot of decisions. One of the most important is size. The right size mattress can make sleeping a dream experience. The wrong one, however, could leave you tossing and turning instead of getting a good night’s sleep. The question of size is even more critical when you’re looking at the difference in king and California king mattresses. 

Both of these mattress types are luxuriously sized, being that they are the biggest standard sizes on the market. People often choose king or California king beds because both offer plenty of room for sleeping while also making beautiful design statements in bedrooms. But it may seem confusing at first when you’re trying to decide between the two—they’re both big, but what’s the difference? As it turns out, when it comes to a California king mattress vs. a king mattress, the difference is subtle yet significant.

Size Difference Between King and California King

The difference between the two mattresses is a matter of inches. A standard king mattress size is 76 inches wide by 80 inches long. The California king mattress size, by comparison, is 72 inches wide and 84 inches long. To sum up, the king is 4 inches wider, and the California king is 4 inches longer. 

Also, many people may assume the California king is bigger overall. But the surface area is 6,048 square inches; a king, on the other hand, measures 6,080 square inches. The subtle difference matters when it comes to making that final choice. Here’s why.

Factors to Think about When Choosing a Mattress

A mattress is as much an investment in your home as it is into your health—establishing good sleep habits and getting the rest you need each night keeps you sharp mentally and physically. Consider the following issues before making your final selection.


  • Sleep Habits

Are you restless at night, moving from one position to another? You may want a king mattress, which offers more width and a slightly greater surface area than a California king one.


  • Who’s in the Bed

The California king’s mattress dimensions may be just the right size for you if you sleep solo or have a partner who doesn’t move around much during the night. It could be worth sizing up to a king if you or your partner is a restless sleeper or if you also share your bed with your small children or pet. 


  • Your Height

People who are 6 feet tall or above will enjoy the extra legroom provided by a California king. 


  • Bedroom Size

Generally, you should have a fairly spacious bedroom with either a king or California king bed so that it doesn’t throw off the proportions of your room. Your choice between the two may depend on where in your room the bed will be placed. Pick a mattress size that allows the bed a few feet of open space on either side. This will avoid you feeling cramped and allows you to walk around the bed, not crawl in and out of it. 


  • Budget

When it comes to price, a California king mattress typically costs more than the king-sized version. The same goes for mattress pads, covers as well as other bedding. 


  • Availability

While both king and California king are standard mattress sizes, it can be easier to find king mattress essentials as well as bed frames. Both the king and the California king are widely accessible compared to other, more specialized king sizes, including the Texas king (80 inches wide by 90 inches long), the Wyoming king (84 inches by 84 inches), the Alberta king (96 inches by 96 inches) and the Alaskan king (108 inches by 108 inches).

Shop Elegant Strand for Your Ideal Bed Set

If you’ve decided that a king mattress is right for you, purchase a Perfetto mattress from Elegant Strand. We’ve engineered the, well, perfect mattress. Luxurious layers of high-quality foam provide exceptional comfort—you get firm support, body contouring and cooling features. This Italian-made king mattress features meticulous construction that hits the spot by not being too firm and not too soft: it’s just right. 

The Perfetto is available in king and queen sizes. We also offer mattress necessities such as a bed foundation and metal bed frame, along with luxurious bedding, for one-stop shopping. All Elegant Strand mattress purchases come with free white glove delivery and removal of your old mattress for your convenience. 


perfetto luxury foam mattress from Elegant Strand

Sleep like a king (or a California king). Find the sleep of your dreams at Elegant Strand today.